There's been a lot of debate recently about whether it would be better for the Giants to give up Hixon or Smith if necessary to complete the oft rumored Braylon Edwards trade. Generally speaking the sentiment seems to be that people would prefer to keep Smith. I thought it might make sense to look at the numbers before jumping to conclusions. Hixon had 43 receptions and a very good 13.9 yard/reception average. His long was 41 and he had 2 TDs. Smith led the team with 57 receptions, but had a below average yds/reception average of 10.1. His long was 30 yards and he had 1 TD. Although Smith had 14 more catches, they yielded 20 less yards than Hixon's 43. Additionally, Hixon had two rushing attempts for 26 yards, and did a good job on punt returns.
I understand that statistics can be deceiving, and I'd like to know which receiver was on the field for more plays, and how many balls were thrown to each. My gut tells me that Smith had more opportunities, but I can't back that up with numbers. Smith was healthy all year and was the number three receiver in every game. Hixon saw major action in the games Burress missed, but only spot duty in the games when Plax played.
People remember Hixon missing that long pass in the Eagles game and they remember Smith making a lot of third down catches to get first downs. Overall, though, I think the numbers suggest that if we had to part with one of the two (and I hope we don't have to) Smith is more expendable.